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He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A. - Shmaltz Brewing Company

Not Rated.
He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A.He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

1,723 Ratings
THE BROS
99
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,723
Reviews: 849
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 11.82%
Wants: 73
Gots: 92 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Shmaltz Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
A Double India Pale Ale with Rye Malt brewed in tribute to Lenny Bruce (Leonard Alfred Schneider 1925-1966).

(Beer added by: mcallister on 06-07-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A. Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,723 | Reviews: 849 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of tempest
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

There are so many good DIPAs, it's sometimes hard to pick them apart. The rye used in Lenny, however, is a great change of pace. It added a rich spice that blends with the citrus hops but still stands out enough to compliment the flavor and stand out. Aside from the rye, the malt sweetness is fairly subtle behind the mostly fruity hops. Also, at 10%, this beer is a bit thick and can be hard to finish by yourself. Still, a great DIPA if you want something different.

tempest, May 26, 2008
Photo of plfahey
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a tulip glass.

Appearance-A deep reddish amber color with moderately high clarity. Thick, moussy head is a pale khaki-darker than I would expect for a beer of this color. The head has pretty solid retention.

Aroma-Juicy hops and candy-sweet malt, this one has an explosive aroma. Brown sugar, burnt caramel, toffee, and molasses malt aromas hide a subtler, nutty/bready/toasty rye character. Hops are citrusy and floral with an overall candied orange feel to them, though are definitely secondary to the huge malt character. The aroma reminds me a little of a barleywine, though the rye character tempers the sweeter malt aromas. Some fruity esters (apple?) are also present.

Flavor-Still reminds me of an American Barleywine in a way-big brown sugar molasses malt flavors open up to toasty rye bread and resiny hops. As the flavor slowly fades, hop bitterness coats the tongue, and swells to moderately high. Slight rye bread crusts carry on through the aftertaste along with resiny hop flavors and tongue-numbing bitterness.

Mouthfeel-Superb. Full and chewy body yet silky and smooth at the same time. Carbonation is moderate. Hop bitterness coats your tongue in the finish and leaves a numb, tingly sensation behind.

A fantastic RyeIPA, and hefty to boot. It's not super hoppy in terms of aroma and flavor, but it is large and in charge, with almost barleywine-like grace. However, the Rye is expertly used here to give characteristic toasty, nutty, bready, and rye flavors and aromas, as well as a long-lasting head and a thick, chewy body. Certainly a sipper, but a good one, and one I'll definitely be drinking again.

plfahey, Jul 07, 2011
Photo of russpowell
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours caramel with 3 fingers of sand colored head. Average lacing & head retention

S: Big time pineyness & some breadyness

T: Huge grapefruit & piney hops up front, plus caramel. Malty cakeyness a bit of caramel try to regain some ground as this warms, but can't conquer the orangey, grapefruitty & piney hops. Finishes semi-dry (the rye??) with much pineyness; plus some caramel & a bit of pralines

MF: Chewy with low carbonation. Skews just a tad too hoppy for me

Drinks a bit slow, but with all that ABV & intensity, what do you expect? Hopheads will dig this. Lenny Bruce would appreciate the bitterness! A very good DIPA that has a few rough edges

russpowell, Jan 31, 2008
Photo of wedge
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Thick rusty amber topped with sticky, heavy, bubbled cream. Aromas of dark citrus and other fruits over sugary toasted malts tinged with alcohol. Swirl it around and the alcohol comes more into focus, helped by the rye. First sip reveals a big creamy brew...darkly sweet hoppiness upfront with fruity alcohol and rye in the second half. There's an insane array of hops used here: Warrior, Cascade, Simcoe, Crystal, Chinook, Amarillo, Centennial, and Amarillo...but it seems to be countered by an equal malt force. A lot of flavor en masse leaving a slick lingering, slightly sour bitterness. Rich, creamy smooth body - big and coating. A nearly sharp bitterness is smoothed out by a powdery texture.

Plenty satisfying overall. Rich, dark, and hoppy. So very big though, it might be a challenge to handle all 22 ounces alone.

wedge, Jan 18, 2007
Photo of revolution
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle into the glass reveals the copper color. A small head develops, then quickly fades leaving some decent lace.

The smell of malt is strong. A scent of fruitiness is also present, a slight touch of citrus.

The rich malty flavor and the alcohol dominate this one, but the bitterness makes its way through.

It's definitely a mouthfull. One you can chew on and enjoy. The large bottle goes a long way.

The RIPA is a pretty serious brew that makes for a great night.

revolution, Jul 03, 2007
Photo of erosier
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice dark amber red with a tall and thick tan colored head that laces the glass nicely as it goes. The aroma is of strong roasted malts along with a big and bold hoppy bitterness at the end. It tastes of very rich roasted malts, some fruit and then a really well balanced but still hoppy aftertaste that is extremely enticing. It has an excellent mouthfeel - very crisp and smooth at the same time which is nice for a beer this big. It has the right amount of carbonation as well. Very drinkable double IPA but not as drinkable as some due to its high abv and well worth a try.

erosier, Feb 23, 2008
Photo of kernalklink
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This brew poured somewhat lackluster- murky brown with some aggressive carbonation. There was a mild hop aroma with some herbal notes and a hefty amount of malts to finish. The taste was much better than expected- great intense earthy woddy hops going to war with a thick syrupy fruity malt with some alcohol burn to back it up. The rye was just slightly noticeable, but gave a great finish, makes our palate dream of something new and unusual- whatever it is, strong barleywine-IPA-sahti, its a good choice.

kernalklink, Mar 05, 2007
Photo of Ladybugger
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a chilly cellar-temperature bottle into a goblet. Pours a lovely ruby brown, clear with sparse bubbles. No head, just a tan ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass. Aroma is of caramel malt, earthiness, and citrusy hops. This beer is hoppy enough to tingle, but not unpleasantly. Initial slight sweetness yields to huge hop flavor, piney, critrusy, floral, wow. An interesting maltiness underlies the flavor, and I can only assume that what I am tasting is the rye. This medium bodied beer doesn't coat the mouth much, but the flavor of the hops certainly lingers for some time. This beer is loud and interesting, one to savor rather than enjoyed bottle after bottle.

Ladybugger, Jan 30, 2010
Photo of cbutova
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Amber brown with a small light tan cap that has subpar retention. Leaves a nice coat of fine lace.

S- Huge blast of caramel malt. Hops are there and are mostly earthy and grassy. Smells like an old ale. Aroma has high strength. Very slight apricot.

T- Nice caramel malt blast and hop presence. Hops lend high bitters and some earthy flavor. Dark fruit and strong malt flavor of a barleywine also comes in. I get some fruit notes as well and definite grass. Rye lends some flavor and spice.

MF- Nice and warm. Fairly thick creamy body with moderate carbonation. Bitters coat the palate along with hop flavor.

DB- Great price and very well hidden ABV. The flavor is big, like a barleywine and is very nice. The rye works well with the caramel malt. Easily worth a shot. One bottle is enough but still drinkable.

cbutova, Jul 10, 2010
Photo of StlHopHead77
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Nice,lightly hazy,rusted amber body beneath 2 inches of strong,beige head with sticky,ring-like lacing.

S-Smells of fruitcake,muted citrus,toffee and pink peppercorns.

T-Really malt forward DIPA.Sweet and bready.Brown sugar,whole grain toast,candied grapefruit and earthy rye spice.

M-Dry and medium bodied with a malty sweetness and sharp rye spiciness.

D-Really good drinkability for 10% ABV.Well hidden
alcohol with no burn.

StlHopHead77, Jan 18, 2011
Photo of ClevoPiwo
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice deep amber or copper color with a decent half finger's width head that dissipated into a frothy cap leaving a bit of lacing.

Smell is nice and complex. Nice citrus hop bouquet up front with a big backbone of malt. The hops are big, but so is the sweetness of the malt, smells very tasty.

Taste is big on the hops with a nice malt sweetness up front and a lingering dry, bitter finish. Very well balanced for a DIPA, many can be too sweet but this one delivers just the right amount of hops with a balanced background of malt sweetness. Nice caramel sweetness from the malt contributes to the big, nearly chewy, mouth feel. You can definitely taste the rye and alcohol in the aftertaste as the palate lingers with a bitter, grainy and hoppy flavor.

Overall, a pretty good and well balanced DIPA!

ClevoPiwo, Aug 17, 2009
Photo of KarlHungus
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This brew pours a dark mahogany color, with a large fluffy off white head that recedes slowly into nice lacing. The aroma of citrus, pine, with some nice spicy rye in the background. The taste is probably more bitten than any other beer I have had to date, not that I mind though. The sip is piney, citrusy and has a more pronounced rye character than the aroma. The aftertaste is completely bitter. The mouthfeel is full bodied with nice carbonation. Overall, this is a fine beer, and I would buy it again.

KarlHungus, Sep 27, 2006
Photo of DoubleSimcoe
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

He'Brew Lenny's on tap at mighty Max's in Fells Point, B'more, MD, served in a pint glass.

Appearance: Golde red like Lauren Bacall's flowing tresses at the height of her career. Slightly transparent. Considerable white head, doesn't last. Great lacing, though.

Smell: Malts, booze, freshly-cooked cereal. Grass after a gentle rain and some hops. The smell of leaves needing to be raked.

Taste: A pungent malty booziness, at first. Boiling rye and other grains. Some sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Full body and flavor, medium-to-full carbonation. A bit too hot as it warms up. Not too sticky.

Drinkability: High! For a 10%, it is chuggable. Despite being obviously malty and cereal-y, it drinks well. Not hot, nicely balanced.

I love Lenny!

DoubleSimcoe, Dec 03, 2010
Photo of jakdracula
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is just great beer. It's 3:46 in the afternoon on a Thursday, and I'm supposed to be at work right now, but someone was kind enough to offer me half the bottle of this fine beer, as she is drinking the other half.

I must say: I'm glad I decided not to work. Unfortunately, we only have one bottle.

Get it. Drink it.

jakdracula, Mar 08, 2007
Photo of ToasterChef
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from a chilly bottle into a chalice. The beer is dark copper in color, translucent, with a head of uniformly small tan bubbles. There are a few bubbles of carbonation rising within the glass. If I could give the smeel of this beer a 4.2 rating, I would. It's a bit better than some 4.0 ratings I've given, but I'm not quite ready to give it a 4.5. It has a robust hop aroma. It's dry and earthy, but also a little sweet. The beer has an interesting flavor. The instant it touches my tongue, I get hit with some candy sweetness. It instantly changes to a bread-like flavor as the beer fills my mouth. As it sits there, the hops begin to appear. While swallowing, the hops get more bitter and linger on for a while. There is certainly some candy sugar and alcohol throughout the tasting. Each sip of this beer is a real mouthful; heavy body and a lot of mouthcoating are some real pluses, but a high amount of sugary stickiness is a slight drawback. This is an easy drinking DIPA. The 22oz bottle would be great for one if you wanted to enjoy it over a good amount of time (longer than a meal), and is perfect for splitting between two. I wouldn't want to drink more than one in a session, as the sweetness may get overwhelming. Otherwise, a solid DIPA and worth seeking out.

ToasterChef, Jan 30, 2010
Photo of aubuc1
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz bomber in to a goblet.

Pours a deep amber with a light tan quickly thinning head.

Big hoppy smell of grapefruit on top of a sweet malt and I think rye.

First is a sweet citrusy, oily hop tste, then the finish is clean bitter. A malty sweet is sandwiched in the middle.

Maybe a little thin mouthfeel, but a nice drinking beer for the size of it.

aubuc1, Dec 21, 2008
Photo of hophead247
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Orange-brown body with a big, dense tannish off-white head that left a good amount of thick lacing. Nose is sweet, with orange, caramel, toffee, spice and bready malt. Flavor is fairly sweet with toffee, spice and a good dose of one note bitterness. Full body and medium carbonation. Good, some big flavors and bitterness, just missing some elements to bring it all together.

hophead247, Feb 15, 2010
Photo of jwinship83
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- amber body with a small white head that becomes nothing more than a crown after a minute or two

S- caramel malt and hops

T- about how it smells. sweet caramel malt upfront with a citrus hops at the end. very nice

M- decently thick with good carbonation. nice bitter aftertaste

D- pretty good. the bottle went down easy enough, but more than one probably wouldnt be as enjoyable. a great beer for the price, something you should check out if youre into the style.

jwinship83, Sep 17, 2008
Photo of evilkalla
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving: Bottle into an ale glass.

A: A very slightly cloudy amber color with 1/8 inch of head on it. A fair amount of carbonation but not overwhelming.

S: Very malty with a lot of citrus hoppiness. Very good.

T: Very bitter, with a bready, toasty maltiness to it. On the finish it's got a lot of hop citrus to it but also hints of very done toast. I happen to like very done toast. Great.

M: Pretty thick feeling, this one. Somewhat viscous. Bubbly at the same time. Really good.

D: I wouldn't pound this one back very fast given the 10% ABV, but it's pretty drinkable. Would buy again.

evilkalla, Nov 10, 2010
Photo of halfP1NT
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed this bad boy back in march or april of 2008.

This beer pours a dark, clear, ruby brown with an off-white, thick, creamy head. There's lots of lacing left behind.

Smell is light; citrus hops and rye. Citrus and grapefruit presence.

I get the rye up front in the taste; then, the lemon and grapefruit hops hit. I love those citrus hops. Definite alcohol presence. I feel like this beer has a darker backbone than most DIPAS,the maltiness is unusual in conjunction with these citrusy hops, but I'm really liking it.

There's a creamy mouthfeel which I really enjoy. Great brew, a little different, I'd definitely recommend it. It's my first from this brewery, I'm curious about what else they have to offer.

halfP1NT, Aug 06, 2008
Photo of backfat
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

poured into probably my favorite pieces of glassware: long stemmed tulip that was a gift from newrbrewr. Alabama dixieland delight blaring in the backround.

Looks great. It's a translucent copper with a frothy tannish head.Thick and luscious looking. I love rye beers so this may be an easy one.

First smell is blasting with rye and malt. I love it. Very sweet hops on the nose, like candied sugar hops. Some dark bread, a bit of metal, and caramel.

First taste is sweet. Made me say mmm. It's bitter, creamy, and filling, but a little too filling. I am glad I didn't buy the whole four pack just because it is a chewy one. A bit of alcohol on the back of the tongue. Whoa...I just found out this thing was 10%. Very "warming." Whew, I can feel this one getting to me. I will be buying this again. It's like bigfoot meets red's rye meets arrogant bastard. Nicely done.

backfat, May 06, 2011
Photo of Mitchster
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber for $4.99 at Oryana's food coop. Brewed with 2-row, rye ale malt, torrified rye, crystal rye 75, crystal malt 65, wheat, kiln amber, and Caramel 70 malt. Hopped with Warrior, cascade, simcoe, crystal, chinook, amarillo, and centennial. Dry hopped with Amarillo and Crystal hops. 10% ABV.

Cracking the cap, this beer barely releases a whiff. I thought it had gone flat, but upon pouring it, I could see the bubbles slowly trying to rise through a beer as thick as treacle. Pours to a hazy deep amber, forming a tall whipped yellow head with amazing retention and thick sheets of sticky lacing. The carbonation is quite mild. The aroma is dense with resinous hops, mango, pineapple, maybe a little hint of pink bubblegum, overripe fruits, big chewy malts, and that trappist belgian candie sugar twang. The mouthfeel is smooth as silk, soft with a huge thick body. Velveteen. The taste opens with an obscene amount of hops...it's not quite vibrant and piney like a Stone IPA, but closer to a Stone Double Bastard. The fruits kick in and a big kick of spicy rye appears. The rye is really noteable and has a spicy, chalky kick. The aftertaste has a light sweetness hanging in there with alot of piney hop resin as well. The bitterness is moderate in comparison to the huge malt body, but it's not sweet by any measure. Alcohol is perceived in gutteral warmth and a peppery finish.

This is a big DRyePA, but I keep wanting more tropical fruit sweet hoppiness. It's pretty tasty and easy to drink. Packs a nice warm buzz, but probably not something I would buy again.

Mitchster, Apr 26, 2008
Photo of ruckzuck
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A double RPA? Count me in! As a huge fan of Terrabin Rye^2, I was really excited to try this.

A - nice dark amber, good white head which subsided faiylr qucikly

S - nice citrusy hops, some good sweetness from the malt as well, a bit like a Terrapin Rye (which is perhaps my favorite session beer)

T - nice sweetness, but the hoppiness comes through really nicely toward the end; nicely hopped but not a superhopbomb; hides the strong ABV very well and is really enjoyable

M - medium bodied, nice carbonation, and leaves a good aftertaste

D - pretty solid! As I said, I bought this based on my love of Rye^2 and Rye Pale Ale, and I was not disappointed. It's a tad more mild than some of the more hoppy DIPAs (for instance, the Hercules I had earlier today), but it is really quite pleasant. I think this was something like $4.50 for a 22 oz. bottle, and what a value! Will definitely buy again, and recommend that other BA's with a love of hops or rye give it a shot!

ruckzuck, Mar 08, 2008
Photo of Nerudamann
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into an oversized wine glass.

Look - deep amber color, a little murky, with about a finger or two's wroth of off-white foam that dissipates slowly.

Smell - I can smell the sweetness of the malts and the bitter aroma of the hops, with the latter prevailing by a bit.

Taste and Mouthfeel - rather malty in the beginning, with subtle sweet hints, but mostly a warty type of taste. That fades slowly into a bitterness toward the end of the middle and well into its presence in the finish. Amazing how long the bitterness waits! Texture is very well-balanced.

Overall - Very good brew with a very interesting tasting range.

Nerudamann, May 07, 2011
Photo of Steamer
4.21/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - Three fingered, cream colored head with lots of retention. Deep copper hues.

S - Strong metallic hops aroma; faint citrus undertones.

T & M - Sharp and lemony; bitter and dry, but smooth going down.

Overall: A strong, well blended rye DIPA that hits the spot without slaughtering your taste buds. Excellent.

Steamer, Mar 03, 2013
He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A. from Shmaltz Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 1,723 ratings.